Citizens Plus: Aboriginal Peoples and the Canadian State
We are in the midst of a fundamental re-evaluation of the desired relation of Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal peoples to each other, and of how the former are to be institutionally and constitutionally accommodated within Canada. Words matter. How we think about where we are and about the future goal of our relationship can confine us in an intellectual prison or liberate us from choices we will otherwise regret.
In Citizens Plus, Alan Cairns unravels the historical record to clarify the current impasse in negotiations between Aboriginal peoples and the state. He considers the assimilationist policy assumptions of the imperial era, examines more recent government initiatives, and analyzes the emergence of the nation-to-nation paradigm given massive support by the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples.
We are battered by contending visions, he argues - a revised assimilation policy that finds its support in the Canadian Alliance Party is countered by the nation-to-nation vision, which frames our future as coexisting solitudes. Citizens Plus stakes out a middle ground with its support for constitutional and institutional arrangements which will simultaneously recognize Aboriginal difference and reinforce a solidarity which binds us together in common citizenship. Essential reading for those in political science, history, Native studies, public administration, and law, Citizens Plus will also appeal to the general public interested in one of the most important and complex issues on our agenda.
Selected as a BC Book for Everybody
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - AJBraithwaite - LibraryThing
Cairns's focus is a constitutional one: how does self-government as a nation fit into the current political landscape of Canada? How do the aboriginal peoples of Canada who live in urban areas (the ... Read full review
4 stars is what I give it
Cohersed into reading it, I thought it needed more explosions
Having known it, I loved it
Answers insideNo book rivals it, I must say